Arista Premium 400, which is rebranded Tri-X is a very good deal if in the US, at about 2.20 per roll.
Try telling a Hasselblad shooter that 35mm could compare with medium format.
Thanks guys for all of your advice. i will certainly experiment a bit with the 35mm v 120 thing. I do really need to shop around a bit more for my film and thanks for the link to that website where you get the hp5 at such a great price. I think it would be interesting anyway just to try out some different brands of film. I believe that Ilford are about to push up their prices again soon, across the board on film and paper.
I fear that as prices continue to rise, demand will continue to fall and the time will come when film is no longer available
Personally I use Delta 400 in medium format and HP5 in 4x5. It's hard to compare the US vs European cost of film because it is purchased in different currencies and other than the US there are vat taxes and here different localities have different sales tax rates. Also I suspect that 35mm shooters tend to take more exposures because the film rolls are longer and many may use cameras with auto advance. I generally use a tripod and don't take as many exposures. Especially when traveling, I want to use the film I can rely on for consistent results. I would rather concentrate on the image and be familiar enough with the materials and equipment that it isn't the dominant part of the process.
I have used fomapan in both 120 and 35mm, and I like it a lot, it develops well in both D76/ID11, and Rodinal, and the quality is very good for the price, I would happily use it in place of Kodak,Ilford or Fuji, and often do.
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One can argue that compared to the time you have to set aside, the film is still a relatively inexpensive portion of the process. Over time, in relative terms, the price of film hasn't really gone up that much, and one thing that most people overlook is the relative scarcity of everything that goes into film, and not just silver. Transportation cost is ridiculously high (and affects cost more and more as global sourcing becomes more and more common and necessary), and at the same time most businesses are held to more stringent economic controls regarding inventory, which makes the total inventory of product less around the world, at the cost of producers, who have to stock it themselves. You still have to manufacture a certain amount to make a production run viable.
Originally Posted by hairday
With that set aside, the bargain of the decade is - Fuji Neopan 100 Acros. It is a very high quality film and an excellent contender for trying out your camera.
There are some less expensive options, like Foma, Adox, Rollei, and Efke. Some people report they never have problems with these films, and others report they do, and at a much higher frequency than those having issues with Kodak, Ilford, or Fuji. That tells you something about the consistent quality that the more expensive film offers.
With that said, the pure pictorial qualities that the Foma, Adox, Rollei, Efke, and Shanghai films offer, can be very good indeed, and here we are discussing features that are not exactly objective. We all like what we like, and it's different from what other people like. If you can live with a higher risk of having a manufacturing defect in your film of choice, then one of those less expensive options could be just perfect for you.
Judge for yourself.
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Whatever place you went to is trying to gouge you. HP5+ in 120 format is available from B&H @ $3.89/roll. Right now the GBP is trading for $1.615, so that price equates to £2.41/roll.
Originally Posted by hairday
Acros 100 is an even better deal. A five roll pack of 120 Acros costs $13.45, or £8.33. That works out to £1.67/roll. Shipping cost is obviously an issue for you, but if you buy in sufficient quantity I'm sure you can get the first rate quality of HP5+ for much less than £5/roll.
Our prices on film and paper were increased around the world on June 1st 2011, we have NO plans for any further price increases whatsoever at this time.
Simon ILFORD Photo / HARMAN technology Limited :
That's good to know...the increasing prices of so many items here in the UK (not only photo supplies) are starting to "make the pips squeak" for many people.
Originally Posted by Simon R Galley
(Being in the UK, you'll remember that quote by a certain socialist politician when, as Chancellor of the Exchequer, he proposed to "squeeze the rich".)
I like the heck out of Fomapan 100, though as Thomas Bertilsson noted above there are relatively frequent reports of quality issues. (I've had some pinholes in sheet formats, and I once got a bad roll of 120.) A lot of people shoot it at 50 rather than 100.
The Efke films (Adox CHS is the same film rebranded) haven't drawn the same level of complaints as far as I can think. The emulsions are soft, so careful handling is called for and some people advocate a hardening fixer. Efke 25 is especially lovely; very, very fine grain (as you'd expect from the speed) and a reduced red response, putting it somewhere between pan and ortho films in general "look".
At the higher speed, since you started out looking for HP5+, I've shot a little bit of Fomapan 400 and found it to be OK. (This was in 120; I would imagine it's awfully grainy in 35mm.) I didn't feel like it had anything really special that set it apart from Tri-X and HP5+, except the price tag, and never shot enough of it to really wring it out and get a feeling for how it behaved in a variety of conditions.
San Diego, CA, USA
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